Website ranking data shows that Facebook is the third most popular site in New Zealand, followed by Google.co.nz and Google.com. Needless to say, more and more businesses are focusing their marketing efforts and time on social media channels like Facebook and moving their budgets away from traditional advertising platforms to increased social spend. Why? Because social media gives an excellent opportunity to engage your target audience effectively and build your brand. But how do you ensure that you’re not wasting your time on your social media strategy? Let’s explore 5 ways many business owners waste time on social media and how you can avoid them.

1. Failure to define a social media marketing goal

Marketing on social media without a plan is the one major source of wasting time in business. You must clearly define your goal. Are you using social media to build brand awareness, generate leads, or get sales?

Most likely, you’re going to use your efforts on social networks for a combination of reasons. The key is to write out a plan of attack so that you’re clear on how well you’re executing that plan. A good rule of thumb is to use brand awareness/educational posts 80%-90% of the time. The other 10%-20% can focus on creating leads and sales. Your plan should include measuring results. Without measurement, how will you know if your social media marketing is effective or wasting time?

Hootsuite.com has written a guide for measuring your social media efforts, while Keyhole.co has listed out 25 free and paid social media analytics tools.

 

2. Failure to define a target market

Make sure you know precisely what your best customer looks like.

You can’t be “all things to all people” and expect to get a return on your social media marketing efforts. Is your best audience Millennials or Baby Boomers? How old is your target market? What do they like? What social networks do they use most?

 

3. Failure to choose the correct social networks

Defining your target market helps solve this time waster.

Your type of business or content also helps define which social platforms to focus on. For example, a real estate agent will usually do well on LinkedIn while a business using a heavy video presence may choose Periscope or Instagram.

Another way to define your best social media channel options is to pay attention to the networks chosen by your competitors. Even better, survey your current customers and find out where they like to spend their time on social media.

 

4. Failure to wisely monitor daily social media activity

If you don’t consciously pay attention to your daily social media use, you can easily waste too much time. It is common to get on a social platform and wonder how an hour went by so quickly.

Here are effective ways to cut down your daily social media activity:

  • Turn off notifications for each channel on your phone
  • Schedule a specific time of day and time limit to check social media
  • Use a tool such as Feedly to find fresh, new content ideas
  • Automate your posts with a tool such as Buffer
  • On Twitter, for example, wisely choose the tweets you’ll respond to (industry influencers, trending hashtags, etc)
  • Plan out your posts the day before – Schedule a small block of time near the end of each day to find content and plan/schedule your posts for the following day

A word of caution about scheduling posts: Don’t post the same content on every social channel that you use. Feel free to promote the same message across various networks, but tailor those posts to fit each network.

A final tip for decreasing the amount of time you spend on social media is to stay off the platforms themselves. This is why scheduling your posts is effective. Instead of logging into Facebook or Twitter and getting distracted, you’re posting without actually being on the platform (when you use services such as Buffer or Hootsuite).

 

5. Failure to curate content

It’s not necessary to post your own content exclusively on social media. In fact, it’s ineffective to do so. You’ll discover your customers and prospects like the fact that you’ve shared content discovered elsewhere. It keeps your social platforms from becoming purely self-promotional.

It also helps save time because you can simply find and post relevant and helpful information from others. During your daily post planning sessions, curate content from a variety of sources. It establishes you as a resource of excellent and valuable content.

It doesn’t take much to streamline your social media efforts so that you feel in control of the process and get the results important to you and your business.

If you follow the above steps, you’ll find that you’re providing the correct content to the correct audience. You’ll save time daily. Using tracking and measurement, you’ll learn which posts are generating the results you planned for at the beginning of your campaign(s). This entire process turns your social work into an effective process that frees you up to invest more time in other important parts of your business.

 

Waste less time, maximise your sales funnel and build your brand effectively with a clear and concise social media strategy. Contact the team here at Grow Digital Marketing for more expert advice!